Decision Support Systems and Tools
Traditionally water is managed by different geographical compartments (e.g. rivers, reservoirs, lakes, estuaries, ground) using specific tools for each compartment and often by different institutions. When specific tools are used for each compartment, the interactions between compartments are specified through boundary conditions (e.g. aquifer recharge in case of aquifer management), which must be set by means of field data describing spatial and temporal variability.
The specification of the boundary conditions between compartments into a watershed causes errors in hindcasting and makes forecasts difficult because data related to boundaries must be forecasted or generated. IWRM solves this difficulty because management tools for all the geographical compartments are coupled and used interactively. The implementation of an integrated approach is more complex, but its exploitation is much more economical, minimizing the amount of data required for running the models.
Another advantage of the integrated approach is that the modelling system provides results to all the stakeholders in the catchment and consequently it stimulates the cooperation among them. In the framework of this cooperation it will be easier to share knowledge, data and working methods, with advantages in terms of investment and terms of solutions acceptance by stakeholders.
KeywordsGeographical Information System Analytic Hierarchy Process Decision Support System Biochemical Oxygen Demand Carbonaceous Biochemical Oxygen Demand
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